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Zombie Catpocalypse and the Fern of Doom

Eyes glazed, Rupert was mesmerized by the fern of doom.

Eyes glazed, Rupert was mesmerized by the fern of doom.

The Marmalade Creature Shambled Along on Hind Feet, Paws Ready to Grasp and Rend

Has the zombie catpocalypse begun? Is this cuddly yet blank-eyed ginger thirsting for gooey, gooey brains? Or is something else at play here? Read on if you'd like to find out what turned this fluffy marmalade kitty into a single-minded killing machine.

all photos by Kylyssa Shay unless otherwise noted

The Fern of Doom, photo by Kylyssa Shay

The Fern of Doom, photo by Kylyssa Shay

The Fern of Doom

It was a quiet day in October when the thing, the vector, arrived in my apartment. It appeared innocent enough, disguised as a gift from my roommate's mother. As you can see, its leaves were full and lush, a testament to her green thumb.

We knew it was as good as dead from the beginning, despite its healthy appearance. My roommate and I had both made many attempts at keeping such ferns alive, to no avail.

Despite our certainty that the fern was a member of the leafy undead, we gave in to optimism and put it in a protected place. It sat in the tub in the bathroom, behind a closed door while we purchased a ceiling hook and tried to determine the best place to hang it.

Vanessa the Fierce being fiercely adorable

Vanessa the Fierce being fiercely adorable

Hanging the Fern of Doom

Its siren song called to the creatures of the household, even through the closed door. Every time we needed to use the restroom, two furry bodies pressed against our legs, pushing to gain entry. Tiny Vanessa shoved her soft white paws beneath the door and sat for hours with her face pressed against it. This strengthened our resolve to find a safe hanging place for the fern of doom.

It took a bit of discussion and strategic planning but we finally arrived at a location that would not be directly beneath a heat vent, encourage the use of humans as ladders, or deprive the plant of sunlight.

As we hung the fern, the cats watched with blood-lust (sap-lust?) and curiosity, eyebrow whiskers trembling.

Rupert was watching the Fern of Doom day in and day out.

Rupert was watching the Fern of Doom day in and day out.

Try as he might, Rupert could not quite reach the dangling fern to bring about its destruction. He sat awake days and nights, sitting on the coffee table and staring at his green nemesis. His sister contented herself by doing fierce battle with and then consuming whatever leaves happened to fall from above although sometimes she'd gaze up longingly and wave a paw in its direction.

The fern was not innocent in all of this. It sent its sneeze-inducing spores of doom throughout our home and I popped pills to combat my watering eyes and runny nose. But Rupert was on the job. I've never seen a cat with a better work ethic.

Zombie Catpocalypse or Fern of Doom Induced Madness?

Zombie-eyed Rupert shambling beneath the Fern of Doom

Zombie-eyed Rupert shambling beneath the Fern of Doom

A week or so into the fern occupation I caught this terrifying image on film. Well, on a digital camera. As you can see by his blank expression, Rupert was consumed by his desire to destroy the fern.

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Ultimately, the fern of doom died all on its own, due to apartment dryness unmitigated by thrice daily spritzings of its leaves. In the end, I brought its nearly skeletal carcass down to distract the kitties from flowers I was making into a funeral arrangement in the dining room. They feasted well and I vacuumed dead leaves up for several weeks thereafter.

The Hook from the Fern of Doom Has Been Put to Good Use

Ginger cat photo mobile

Ginger cat photo mobile

As you can see, the hook has been put to use displaying something far more adorable and less likely to produce small fuzzy cat zombies. A part of me wonders if Rupert didn't plan this all along.

Relaxed and happy Rupert being excessively cute

Relaxed and happy Rupert being excessively cute

Now that the fern of doom has died and been disposed of, Rupert is relaxed and happy. He spends his days napping and his nights napping and charging after imaginary foes in endless and greatly varied battle simulations. If another anything of Doom finds its way into our home, he will be ready.

Vanessa the Fierce, napping on a little sofa

Vanessa the Fierce, napping on a little sofa

Vanessa the Fierce also survived the zombie catpocalypse and the fern of doom. She is pictured here getting a well deserved rest after weeks keeping watch over the home-invading houseplant.

She spends her days dreaming of murder and her nights plotting murder and practicing the fine art of knocking stuff down. Although a lovely specimen of the cat mafia, Vanessa takes the time to enjoy creative pursuits such as the playing of the taplinkta song on the bedroom blinds and knocking stuff down to knock other stuff down.

Has Your Home Been Invaded by a Fern of Doom or Other Cat Zombie Producing Houseplants?

sweetstickyrainbo on August 18, 2012:

I always suspected that cats were evil. Doesn't Keenu Reeves use cats to enter hell?

randomthings lm on August 12, 2012:

too funny. LOVE the first picture of the black and white cat...good angle, good shot! Cute story.

suzy-t on August 11, 2012:

Great lens... So sorry to hear about the fern but I'm glad Rupert is happy!... Animals are so funny sometimes... Blessed...

rebecca-robinson-3785 on August 11, 2012:


Monica Lobenstein from Western Wisconsin on August 11, 2012:

My cat found no peace until she killed the peace lily in our house sending the mud of the freshly watered plant spraying over everything in the house. This was hilarious! Thanks for the laugh today!

Myreda Johnson from Ohio USA on August 11, 2012:

Fun lens that made me laugh. Great job!

anonymous on August 10, 2012:

Haha! 10/10 for originality!

anonymous on August 10, 2012:

LOL... so cute! I don't have any plants in the house due to my cats and their desire to poo in plant pots, ha ha...

anonymous on August 09, 2012:

Cats have senses that we just don't have and Rupert may have been on to something with all that determination to fight out of his plant of doom induced zombie like state and claim another of his 9 lives...on a cloud. The change is remarkable for sure and I'm wondering if his head spun all the way around while entranced. Perhaps The Vanessa wasn't quite so affected but she was sensing that plant had to go too. You have two great watch cats for any plant that makes a wrong move! Delightfully done....and you did make me smile!

anonymous on August 09, 2012:

Love your lens!

LisaDH on August 09, 2012:

I guess you'll never have to worry about dangerous houseplants with your protector around. Love that last photo of Rupert!

anonymous on August 09, 2012:

This cracked me up, great job!

RichLeighHD on August 08, 2012:

Brilliant lens! Loved it. :)

anonymous on August 08, 2012:

Funny pics.

JoshK47 on August 08, 2012:

What a wonderfully hilarious lens - loved it! Blessed by a SquidAngel!

LouJon on August 08, 2012:

Great lens, cats can be the funniest things sometimes :)

AlienwareCoupons on August 08, 2012:

Ahh, so cute pictures. I love cat!

BeadCatz on August 07, 2012:

Great lens. I love cats and your lens made my day.

Fay from Cornwall, UK on August 07, 2012:

Great lens and yes it did make me smile. Cats are amazing in all their antics. Loved the original title too. Look forward to more antics.

Leah J. Hileman from East Berlin, PA, USA on August 06, 2012:

I deliberately keep plants out of the house so the cats don't get into them. They've munched on or knocked over my seedlings three years in a row in my window boxes. This lens made me laugh out loud, thanks :)

fullofshoes on August 06, 2012:

Hilarious account of the invasion. Haven't had a houseplant incident but when still a kitten, our lovely Beep suffered a short term case of "flying cat syndrome". You can only imagine. Fun lens, made me laugh... a lot. ~blessed!~

anonymous on August 06, 2012:

I really enjoyed this story of the cat zombie and the fern of doom - too cute.

pawpaw911 on August 06, 2012:

Love the title, and the cats.

Sara Krentz from USA on August 05, 2012:

This was delightful to read - I can't stop giggling! Rupert & Vanessa are beautiful. Blessings to you and the kitties : )

Maurice Glaude from Mobile on August 05, 2012:

This was cute.

cocomoonbeams on August 05, 2012:

Very creative and funny! Makes me miss my cats.

Peggy Hazelwood from Desert Southwest, U.S.A. on August 05, 2012:

Alas, you have some fierce and protective kitty cats! Loved this tale of the two tails who guarded you against the fern of doom.

robertzimmerman2 on August 05, 2012:

Nope, we are "safe" so far.

Kim from Yonkers, NY on August 05, 2012:

I enjoyed your lens. and LOVE Vanessa's kitty couch! I bet my Sully would like that. (see here meowography lens) I've added this to her lens (for next update)

victoriuh on August 04, 2012:

Very funny and creative! Blessed.

squidstorm on August 04, 2012:

Awesome lens, funny :D

clayva on August 02, 2012:

Very cute lens, playful and yes, it made me smile. I have a large fern plant that our cat simply would not leave alone. I finally had to put it atop a bar stool and away from anywhere he could climb just to save the plant! Funny stuff our pets do.

Ellen Gregory from Connecticut, USA on July 31, 2012:

Got rid of my cactus after I got a cat. Didn't want him spiking himself and no way he was going to stay away. He ate my palm tree. I learned to decorate with something other than plants. Very funny lens -- I can relate.

kburns421 lm on July 30, 2012:

This is too funny! Love it.

Tarra99 on July 30, 2012: cute...yes the lens made me smile :o)

writerkath on July 30, 2012:

I'm Cat-Zombie-less at the moment, but this lens made me smile, and also miss my Kitty terribly. I LOVE that cat bed in the photo above! Awesome lens!!

Lorelei Cohen from Canada on July 30, 2012:

Ha but I love your kitty mobile much better than your fern of doom. Your kitties are pretty darn cute too and you definitely made me smile with this lens.

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